Every year we sit down and anxiously wait for Christmas. The stores are filled with it by November. Everyone is getting ready for the next Christmas before it’s even over. What we cannot ignore is the commercialised aspect to the day.
If you ask someone what they’re looking forward to at Christmas. They’re bound to mention the adverts.
That 4 minutes of advertising where John Lewis or Sainsburys battle it out for the best Christmas ad. We become more invested in that than Christmas itself.
But it’s all a ploy to make you spend your money there. Yes there is a festive element to it. I’m not a Scrooge but it’s clever advertisement that pulls on the heartstrings which makes a brand stick in your mind.
Just like the Coca Cola truck – I cannot wait to see the truck come past my city but again itâ€™s advertising at the heartstrings.
Christmas isn’t about Santa driving around delivering bottles of coke. Yet we link it to the festive period and we’re hooked forgetting the original idea behind Christmas.
Shops play heavily into this as well. There are not many stores that won’t tug on the idea of this being the “best Christmas gift”. The “ideal one for your loved one or friend”. It’s the “gift that tops others”.
When in reality anyone should be happy with whatever gift you get them. That present shouldn’t make their Christmas, yet retailers sell it off like that gift will make or break Christmas.
Christmas is a time to be together, to be there for one another and celebrate the festive period. But it’s surprising how many people will spend ridiculous amounts without actually helping people.
Does your daughter really need that overpriced toy or do they need a maths book to help their numeracy.
Does that homeless person outside who’s freezing need a nice thick jumper or some bedding or do you need to sit in run up the electricity bill and watch that long-awaited Christmas ad. It’s not hard nor time-consuming to help someone in need.
Services like the Operation Christmas Child are a great way to get involved and spread kindness rather than cash this year.
Simply fill a shoe box with toys, pens, pencils and send it through to one of their pick up points and you are giving a gift to a child who will probably never have a Christmas like yours.
Or you can go to your local food shelters and donate some food. Maybe that tin of fruit you’ve had in the cupboard for too long. Or even just going out and buying a bag of veg it’s not hard to do.
Yet what’s funny is that we don’t really see that advertised.
As a kid I remember the shoe box appeal being advertised heavily. Whereas nowadays we’re more bothered what we’re getting ourselves.
It seems like Christmas has lost the spirit of helping each other and it’s more about what can you buy that special person.
Think about what Christmas means to you this year, and what it means to others who might not be in your situation. Whether it be donating to charity, sending a shoe box off to a child less fortunate, or buying a homeless person a hot cup of soup. Give back this Christmas.